Wealth and success are often the dreams of leaders.  We consider how wonderful it would be if we were so successful and wealthy that all our worries would be over.   We assume that if you have enough money and success that you would not have to worry about anything in life.

However, you only have to look at famous people like Michael J. Fox. While he was reaching the peak of his career, his health became an issue that he could not overcome.  He was forced to leave his acting career early and begin a fight for his health and life.

Money and prestige will not bring peace or success to our lives.  It will not end the challenges we face or the obstacles we will encounter.  In fact, the more important something is, the more challenges there will be.  Success can come at any point in your life and is not dependent on your wealth or status.

True success and wealth are in realizing the joys and gifts that are part of our everyday life.

The ability to get out of bed, dressed, and eat food.  To have a home that provides shelter, a job to go to, and people who care about us.  Further, consider that we live in a country where we have freedoms, our health, and the fact that each new day is truly a new day with a fresh start to begin anew.

For many, this list will seem like just the norm and nothing special.  However, this is where leaders can miss the real “gold” in life.  If you take all these things away, you will feel poor indeed.  You see it is often the small things that are the big things.  Seeing these aspects of life with appreciation and gratitude shows us how rich we are. It shows us much we have to be thankful for each day.

We can always complain that the world is not to our liking, or the people on our team are not as smart or fast as we would like, or that the food or home we have are not as luxurious as we would like.  But eating steak instead of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches will not bring you joy.  Yes, it is great if we have those choices but there are many in the world who do not have enough to eat no matter what the food consists of for that day.

Truly being rich in life begins with gratitude for what we already have and an appreciation if monetary wealth or success comes to us that is just icing on the cake.  We can celebrate each moment and each day for what we have already been given.

How will you reflect on and celebrate your blessings during this holiday season and all year long?